Scouts Deck Guide

Scouts are once again a Tier 1 Staple into the meta, boasting an impressive win rate, and popularity that is ever climbing.

Originally written by Agigas,
updated for ‘A Curious Journey’ Ranked Season by Den.


Scouts are a powerful board-centric deck that relies on its signature keyword, Scout, to find advantages. When this deck dominates the board, attacking twice with Scout pushes a huge amount of damage.

Miss Fortune and Quinn are the perfect headliners for this deck that is filled with ways to gain extra attacks. Your champions can level up very quickly, and once one of them does – you are in a very good position.

To peel for these key units, Scouts run quite a few protection spells. Sometimes, a good draw with Miss Fortune can make you feel like you are almost playing a combo deck, even though your list is filled with strong aggro/midrange units.

Scout is a very aggressive archetype, able to close out games very quickly with extra attacks. However, the deck is also able to maintain the pressure for quite a long time thanks to its midrange nature, with powerful combat tricks like Riposte and strong finishers like Cithria the Bold.

Currently, the archetype can be built in two ways – a ‘classic’ version featured above, the Demacia Allegiance variant featuring Vanguard Bannerman.

Both builds have their merits depending on matchups. The classic build is more consistent, as the inclusions of Shellshocker and Island Navigator help strengthen the core of the strategy, which is all about dominating the board. The Allegiance version has a higher power ceiling as the Bannerman turn offers the deck a huge power spike in the midgame. 

For the rest of this guide, we will be focusing on the classic build as our main point of reference, but the tips are all mostly applicable to the Allegiance version as well. Since the latest patch on February 16, the allegiance build of the deck is being more discreet than it was in the past, leaving the heavier Bilgewater lists more prevalent at all ranks of the ladder.

2 main additions are worth noting with the latest patch: Durand Sculptor and Petricite Broadwing. The first card is a huge boost to the deck’s survivability, and the difference there is between a 3/3 Miss Fortune and a 3/4 one can be game-winning when the most popular removal are picked to deal with Gnar and therefore looking to deal 3 damage (Get Excited! and Buster Shot mainly). The 2/2 has quickly become a must-kill unit in the Scouts decks and serves as a removal magnet that will either buff other units or make the opponent use valuable resources in order to deal with it.

The Petricite Broadwing is another good challenger, and this deck just loves the keyword as it allows to both control trades and abuses Miss Fortune’s passive ability. As a 3/3 vanilla unit, it trades well into any other 2-drop in the game and helps the deck solidify its most important part of the match: the early game setup.


Techs and Options

While the 1/3 body is pretty bad when it comes to trading or dealing damage, the Stony Suppressor is one of the best tech cards in the spell-based metagames. This card can be a game-winner when played on turn 2 as it will net you a ton of mana over the course of the game, especially against opponents looking to abuse cheap spells like Lee Sin or Kennen decks.

With the Formidable keyword being played in the deck, Yordle Ranger has become my preferred choice as the staple turn 6 in the deck. Genevieve Elmheart still is a great alternative though as she represents a good offensive unit with Scout, and can be useful on defense with her buff to our board.

Mostly used in the allegiance-based list, Cithria helps grant the very good fearsome keyword to your board in order to push much more damage in the late game. As the metagame focuses on flexibility and synergies with Bandle being the most popular region, Cithria can be a good addition to help push damage on the opposing nexus rather than being focused on the board in the late game.

A card that is often in contention, but usually doesn’t make it into the 40 final cards because it doesn’t push the deck’s main gameplan of pressuring the opponent through the board. Single Combat is great against decks with Challenger or Vulnerable keywords in order to protect Miss Fortune. Also, with Brightsteel Protector in the deck, the Single Combat can usually find some good use.

A rather unplayed card that is more of a high roll than a possible staple. Shield of Durand on Miss Fortune leaves her almost unkillable for many decks and safe to level up as the game advances. With many players claiming you should always mulligan to get Miss Fortune, Shield of Durand is another card aimed at supporting this specific gameplan


General Tips

  • Miss Fortune is the best card in your deck.
    While Scouts still remain as a powerful deck even when you don’t draw Miss Fortune, there is no arguing that it is MF who really makes the deck shine. Her ability is very strong with Scout units, and the threat of her level-up is considerable. Even in her level 1 form, MF combined with your combat tricks can force the opponent into awkward plays, freeing a lot of space for your other units to finish the job.
    • When you have Miss Fortune, you can play more reactive to try and protect her with combat tricks.
    • Unless under specific circumstances, avoid trading with your Miss Fortune. If she stays alive and levels up she will probably win you the game.
    • Keep track of her level-up condition and plan ahead to level her up as fast as possible.
  • You can’t trigger Scout twice during the same turn, not even with Rally.
    Because of that, casting a Rally during your opponent’s attacking turn is often the way to gain the most pressure out of it, especially when you have a Miss Fortune or a Quinn.
    However, it can sometimes be worth casting Rally even if it doesn’t enable an additional Scout attack. And later in the game, you will often use it as a finisher regardless of what turn it is.
    Also consider that sometimes, if you have the attack token, the optimal way to attack is to go in with all units at once, then cast a Rally and use the Scouts keyword. You will still get 3 attacks in a turn total but this particular pattern might apply more pressure.
  • You don’t have burn damage.
    You are aggressive, but you don’t have a lot of reach (except for Miss Fortune’s ability and champion spell) – so you need to keep the board pressure up in order to win. Scouts’ playstyle is not a “fast and loose” playstyle of a true aggro/burn deck, we act more as a fast-paced midrange deck. You still want to pressure the opponent and close the game out fast, but you also need to work for good trades and maintaining a solid board.
  • You can easily run out of board space.
    Because you have a lot of cards that summon two units (Quinn, Marai Warden, Island Navigator), it is very easy to find yourself with a full board and not much to do with your mana. Plan ahead: sometimes you should take trades to free space for future units, while other times you have to avoid trades to benefit from board-wide synergies (Cithria the Bold, Ranger’s Resolve, Miss Fortune’s ability).

General mulligan tips:

  • This deck relies a lot on Miss Fortune – you often want to mulligan most other cards to increase your chances of finding her. Don’t be afraid to mulligan away your low-cost units to find her, your deck has a low curve so you’re unlikely to brick.
  • If you already have your key cards, keep curve-out units and cards that combine nicely with your key pieces. Scout units and protection spells are a great way to enable your Miss Fortune.

Be aware that these are just the general guidelines to help you understand the deck’s game plan. As a pressure deck, your mulligan will be rather matchup-dependent, as each opponent will be weak to different cards in your deck. Please refer to the matchup section below for more specific advice on mulligans against different meta decks!


Matchups

Mulligan for: Miss Fortune, Brightsteel Protector, Fleetfeather Tracker, Petricite Broadwing.

Matchup Tips:

  • Although you should be able to win this matchup more often than not, you will never win it with your Nexus still at 20. Accept the damage and focus on dominating the board to be able race back.
  • Miss Fortune is a nightmare for the opponent, who usually has to use a Noxian Fervor on her. Her passive ability prevents most blocks for the opponent and we can easily protect her with cheap spells.
  • A Rally will usually net you much more damage than your opponent’s Decimate. Once they start burning you, it is the signal to invest everything you have and set up for a quick lethal.
  • Although the Fearsome keyword can be a problem to deal with early on, do not refrain from taking average value or even bad blocks. If we can run the opponent out of cards, our bigger Scouts will get a lot of damage in later on.

Mulligan for: Miss Fortune, Durand Sculptor, Ranger’s Resolve, Scout units, Sharpsight.

Matchup Tips:

  • Senna is the big problem in the matchup, as she allows the opponent to wait for us to attack and then be reactive. We need to create a board that makes Senna awkward to play.
  • They will try to deal with Miss Fortune through their cheaper spells (like Darkness, Vile Feast, Pokey Stick) but our goal is to force a Vengeance from the opponent. Making them use much more mana than our unit costs is what allows us to build the tempo lead.
  • The opponent has healing, therefore making board development is more important than trying to race with a few units and some Rallies. Although The Ruination punishes this route, we often are better off completely ignoring that card to play to our win condition.
  • The key point of the matchup will be around turns 4-6 as this where we have our bigger Scouts and the opponent has their champions. Creating an early lead is what allows us to play proactively in this phase of the game.
  • Even if you don’t have one, keeping 4 mana open in order to bluff a Rally effect can make your opponent waste a lot of mana as they will be afraid to develop and get punished.

Mulligan for: Miss Fortune, Brightsteel Protector, Fleetfeather Tracker, Petricite Broadwing.

Matchup Tips:

  • Although you should be able to win this matchup more often than not, you will never win it with your Nexus still at 20. Accept the damage and focus on dominating the board to be able race back.
  • A Rally will usually net you much more damage than your opponent’s Decimate. Once they start burning you, it is the signal to invest everything you have and set up for a quick lethal.
  • Gnar and Ziggs are difficult to deal with 1 on 1. Investing a Sharpsight pro-actively on a challenger is a worthy investment to get rid of these premium units.
  • Gnar level up is one of the main concerns in the Match up. We need to prevent the opponent from being able to play on a defensive turn and use it as removal the turn after. It is too much of a tempo swing.

Mulligan for: Miss Fortune, Durand Sculptor, Early Swarm.

Matchup Tips:

  • Timelines is looking for a rather quiet early game so it can get to its comfort zone safely. We need to bring some pressure and force some ressources out of them before Trundle can stabilise the board in their favor.
  • Without Avalanche or Blighted Ravine, Timelines has to remove our units one at the time. If we dominate the trades, we should be able to overwhelm them on the board.
  • Burried in Ice is the really scary card of the match up, but it costs our opponent a lot to play it. If you have some refill in hand, you can afford to play around it, otherwise, look for open attacks once the opponent reaches 9 mana for spells. It That Stares is another potential concern in the lategame.
  • Both champions are the main tempo tools for our opponent in the midgame unless they got the Timelines activated. Miss Fortunes passive ability then removes most of the early game units the opponent could block with.

Mulligan for: Miss Fortune, Durand Sculptor, Challenger units.

Matchup Tips:

  • Rallies are a key part of the matchup once we established the board, as both decks plan on dominating it. A Rally forcing a couple of units into blocking is already a great play as it lowers the threat of Yordles in Arms.
  • Gnar is the major threat of the match up for us, and we don’t have so many good ways of dealing with it outside of Challengers supported by Miss Fortune’s passive. Building up the pressure early enough can force Gnar into blocking and therefore increases the chances of removing him.
  • Ranger’s Resolve can be used pro-actively in order to get better trades. With no AoE spells in the opponent’s deck, this is the most value we can get out of the card.
  • Brightsteel Protector can be huge in denying a leveled-up Gnar to take a trade and gain some tempo. The barrier usually should be used on a challenger or for defensive purposes.

Mulligan for: Miss Fortune, Durand Sculptor, Challenger units, Sharpsight, Ranger’s Resolve, Brightsteel Protector, Quinn with a good hand.

Matchup Tips:

  • Despite the fact that Scouts are an aggressive archetype, the key to this matchup is not as much in pushing early damage as in keeping control of the board.
  • Depending on your hand, you will either push for early game tempo or curve out to your bigger units on turn 5 and 6. Pay close attention to your opponent’s choices as it should give you a lot of information about which role they are going for.
  • Your protective spells are a key component of the mirror match as they grant immediate tempo. Always assess whether you would rather dominate now or be able to protect a future important unit.
  • Miss Fortune is a key card in the matchup. She can level up quickly and put an end to the game very early. Neither of you has proper removal, so your only way to deal with her is through Challenger, which is easier said than done because of protection spells.
    • Miss Fortune shapes the game around her. Keep combat tricks up to protect your Miss Fortune, or to help with removing the opponent’s MF.
    • Remember that Miss Fortune’s ability breaks Barriers.
  • Ranger’s Resolve completely negates the effect of Miss Fortune’s ability on units, even when she is leveled-up. However, it still destroys Barriers even if it does 0 effective damage because of Tough.

Mulligan for: Miss Fortune, Brightsteel Protector, Durand Sculptor, Challenger units.

Matchup Tips:

  • Lurk is very close to the mirror matchup in terms of gameplan – except we have the better start and they have the better closure. We need to dominate the early game to be able to push damage once Pyke and the bigger Lurkers become available for our opponent.
  • Pyke‘s spell is a big problem in the matchup, as once he reaches 5 or 6 attack, only Riposte is capable of protecting our units. Most of the time, I would advise to play as if its not there – only play around Pyke’s level-up. 
  • Both decks are all about the board, except Lurk doesn’t really have cards like our Rallies that can get stuck in our hand if we have no units on board. A top-decking battle would usually favor our opponent. 
  • Health isn’t really a concern early in the game, as dominating the board is much more important that a healthy Nexus. Use your health as a resource and be concerned only when the big Overwhelm Lurkers are a likely possibility.

Mulligan for: Brightsteel Protector, early board swam, Challenger units.

Matchup Tips:

  • They have very good single target removals, so it is unlikely that Miss Fortune will be able to do much work in the matchup. Relying on flooding the board early and going wide usually nets much better results.
  • It usually is better to try and remove units as early as possible with our challengers. Once the Fated units start growing, there is no chance we will be able to remove them. 
  • Barrier effects are about the only thing that can protect our units in trades in this matchup, making Riposte (if you play it) and Brightsteel Protector very important tempo tools.
  • On attack turns, granting Barriers to Valor allows us to remove one blocker from the equation for both our attacks, usually netting us the highest potential damage.
  • It is tempting to not attack once the opponent plays the Wounded Whiteflame so we wouldn’t feed its Fury, but avoiding attacks gives the opponent even more tempo and gets them closer to a leveled up Pantheon.

Mulligan for: Miss Fortune, Challenger units, Sharpsight, Ranger’s Resolve, Brightsteel Protector

Matchup Tips:

  • Our opponent will likely be more explosive on the board and they can refill their hand with the Discard mechanic. We need to pressure them early on when they don’t have enough mana for both units and spells. 
  • Our best tempo swing is several blocks being supported by Ranger’s Resolve resulting in a tempo lead on the board. If we keep trading 1-for-1 with the opponent throughout the game, we will usually run out of stream before they do.
  • Our bigger units should be safe against their damage spells outside of Whirling Death and allow us to bring some pressure, but we need to save enough health to be able to go late in the game.
  • Brightsteel Protector is great during your defensive turns to stall the enemy and make them think twice about attacking. It will help us set up better situations and not fall into a race the opponent is favored in.
  • Rumble is a huge problem for our deck. One of the best way to contain it is to be agressive onto the board so the opponent cannot save up enough ressources to discard 3 cards for Rumble.

Closing Words

Scouts was one of the best decks of the previous metagame, and many were wondering how good it would be once Ahri kenned suffered a nerf, potentially removing a good match up for Miss Fortune and Quinn.

With some great additions from Galio’s support cast, Durand Sculptor and Petricite Broadwing have pushed the deck to a much better raw power level than before, allowing Scouts to keep their Tier 1 contender status.

Currently, the deck benefits from good matchups into the popular Trundle Timelines and the ability to play pro-actively against many opponents to boost one of the best win rates of the metagame. What the best 40 cards list still is in the air as more players are picking up the deck and trying to refine it to perfection.

If you have any questions about the deck or the current state of the game, feel free to join our Discord server. As for myself, you can find me on Twitter or helping aspiring players at Metafy.

Good game everyone

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den

Den has been in love with strategy games for as long as he can remember, starting with the Heroes of Might and Magic series as a kid. Card games came around the middle school - Yugioh and then Magic. Hearthstone has been his real breakthrough and he has been a coach, writer, and caster on the French scene for many years now. Although it took him a bit to get into Legends or Runeterra, his EU Seasonal Tournament win was the perfect start to get involved in the community. He now coaches aspiring pro players and writes various articles on the game. Find him on Twitter at @den_CCG!

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